Holding of Sinulog needs improvement

READERS VIEWS - Joselito S. Berdin - The Freeman

The holding of the Sinulog 2024 grand parade at the South Road Properties was a huge success with no weather disturbance threatening to disrupt or put to a halt the yearly cultural activity spearheaded by the Cebu City government as part of the celebration for the Feast of the Holy Child. Kudos to all the men and women of the Sinulog Foundation Inc. (SFI) whose untiring efforts had made the sinulog grand parade orderly, peaceful and successful.

From the beginning until the end of the grand parade, the police only recorded minor crime incidents, e.g., a man stealing a woman's hand phone and some spectators grew pale and unconscious on account of the scorching heat of the sun. That is according to what I have heard on the radio. The police might have entered on the blotter some other minor crimes being committed in the course of the Sinulog grand parade which fall beyond my capacity to check.

I don't care if some readers would criticize me of having a writing style like that of a field reporter or a journalist; but I say this all from the heart because I was there during the grand parade, enduring patiently the heat and the uncomfortable condition, mingling and standing with the crowd and watching the Sinulog for many hours carrying only one small bottle of mineral water to quench my thirst.

Based on my own observation as the street dancing went on, the dancers appeared to be physically weak and exhausted, their long hours of exposure to the scorching heat of the sun had something to do with it. On the other hand, some spectators endured the same pathetic situation, watching the grand parade in standing position under the scorching heat of the sun, for there were no longer any seats available for them due to the limited number of makeshift grandstands installed along the roadside of the grand parade route. Others occupied the center island of the south coastal road to be able to watch the stunning performances of the dancers.

In the early years of the Sinulog grand parade, when it was held right in the heart of Cebu City, spectators watched comfortably from their respective locations as the dancers passed by; the trees and the buildings along the streets of the Sinulog grand parade route shielded them from the scorching heat of the sun. The grand parade traversed the main thoroughfares of the city and it started from early morning 'til early evening of the same day. It was then commonly called mardi gras.

It can be recalled that Cebu City mayor Michael Rama and Cebu governor Gwendolyn Garcia were at loggerheads in choosing the right venue for the Sinulog grand parade; both public officials had different and valid reasons in resolving the Sinulog venue issue, but in the end mayor Mike Rama got the upper hand --the grand parade was to be held at the SRP for safety and security reasons. And the lawyer-mayor proved to be right considering that when the grand parade came to an end, a beautiful fireworks display immediately followed --a risky kind of activity that would lead to the occurrence of fire. Such a thing could only be carried out in an open and wide area of land like the SRP where no urban poor settlements or any residential houses made of light materials abound.

The two public officials had clearly engaged in a tug-of-war game, so to speak. The pros and cons, the advantages and disadvantages of their hardline stance on the issue of venue all boiled down to one thing --whoever has the domain must prevail. In this case, Mayor Michael Rama was the one to be followed, no more, no less.

In preparation for the holding of the Sinulog grand parade 2025, those responsible are to make sure that there is such an adequate installation of makeshift grandstands to accommodate a great number of spectators as well as collapsible tents and portalets along the roadside of the Sinulog grand parade route where the participating dancers can take shelter for a while or answer the call of nature.

vuukle comment


  • Latest
Are you sure you want to log out?

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

Get Updated:

Signup for the News Round now

or sign in with